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Cast vs. Forged

Discussion in 'Golf Equipment Talk' started by Hangfire, Apr 25, 2007.

  1. Hangfire

    Hangfire Well-Known Member

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    I own a set of Mizuno MX-23 irons that are forged, are these really any better than say a cast set of irons? Can you really "feel" the difference between the two or could this be a load of marketing hype?

    :miz:
  2. twofast2s

    twofast2s Well-Known Member

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    not many people can feel the difference b/w the two, from a study done by a golf magazine i read few month back.

    however, i went from casting to forged and i think the difference was there, but only slight. so it could be just my imagination.

    forged irons are easier to bend, so you can adj. lies and lofts. as far as being better.. i think it's more of a preference
  3. mr3856a

    mr3856a Well-Known Member

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    I must be one of those people, then, because I can absolutely, 100% tell the difference. If you think about the molecules being in a jar, a cast club would be like a jar full of marbles. There's a lot of space between each molecule, and therefore energy doesn't get transferred as easily.

    In a cast club, it's like a jar of sand - the molecules are very tightly spaced, and energy gets transferred very easily, which means you can feel slight variations in where the ball makes contact with the face because the energy is transferred easier from the clubhead, up the shaft and to your hands.

    Your clubs might have slightly less feel even though they're forged because they are cavity backs. But go grab yourself a Big Bertha iron and compare the two - you'll be able to feel the difference, no question.

    To me a cast club feels like a forged club - with a towel wrapped around the clubhead.
  4. RickinMA

    RickinMA Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    forged irons also take more of a beating in your bag - cast irons are usually a bit harder and resist bag chatter a bit better

    that said, catching a forged club just right and puring a shot is a sweet feeling - great shots on cast clubs are nice too, but I think if you play enough, you can appreciate a bit of a difference
  5. warbirdlover

    warbirdlover Ender of all threads Supporting Member

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    There is no difference between the two if the same steel is used. (Molecules closer together?). The cast might have some very fine porosity but is doubtful since the casting processes are so much better now. Forged are just "cast" ingots heated to very high temperatures and hammered into shape. This makes them a little stronger (assuming same material) then cast because they are cold worked and they have flow lines (ferrite/pearlite) conforming to the shape. BUT, since most cast irons are stainless they are harder and stronger then the plain carbon steels used in forged irons. Forged irons are softer (more ductile) then cast (easier to bend) but if you can feel the difference you're better then most. Forged won't last as long because of the softer, lower strength steels used. They'll ding up and wear faster then cast stainless irons. The ball wouldn't know the difference either. :)
  6. Pa Jayhawk

    Pa Jayhawk Well-Known Member

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    Just to save typing from a prior thread
    So a Forged club could likely "Feel" better, although it is unlikely you are looking at identical club design to really compare, so who's to say it is not due to the club design.
  7. mr3856a

    mr3856a Well-Known Member

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    Yes, the molecules are closer together in a softer metal. Castings use a harder metal than forgings, as you correctly point out:

    I would think anyone could feel the difference between the two. I hit a cast iron the other day for the first time since I bought my 32's, and it felt like a wooden baseball bat hitting a ball - no feel whatsoever, just a dull "thud", and off went the ball. You could hit it off the toe, heel, skull it, you name it - they all felt the same.

    I think the "cast is much better nowadays" theory came about from OEM's trying to justify selling you an $800+ set of cast irons.

    They will ding up faster, very true - it depends on how you play as well. If you walk, you'll see much less bag clatter. If you ride carts all the time they'll be banging around back there, and that will take it's toll on them. If you hit a small rock under your ball, however, be prepared to be pissed...

    Anyway, I think there's a humongous difference between the two.
  8. warbirdlover

    warbirdlover Ender of all threads Supporting Member

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    There you go!! :)

    Forget talking about molecules. In metallurgy you are talking on the atomic level. You would be talking about atomic crystalline structure if it mattered but one would NOT be closer together then another. All steels have pretty much the same density. The difference is in the "microstructure". One (forged) would be mostly ferrite (pure iron) with a small amount of pearlite (A mixture of ferrite and cementite). The other (cast) would be more pearlitic. Try hitting some "cast" Cleveland irons made from ductile iron (graphite nodules in the microstructure) if you want to feel soft. I'm the corporate metallurgist for a transmission company. Don't argue with me. :D
  9. JEFF4i

    JEFF4i She lives! Supporting Member

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    It's like a dorky duel of knowledge between Warbird and mr3. Go Warbird(Sorry, I gotta support him, we're like brothers)

    Honestly, it's difficult. I've hit some cast irons, namely the new pings and cobra inertia series, that felt great. I've also hit some cast irons, some titleist and taylormade, that you could tell the difference. I prefer my forged MP-33s, I can feel the difference and I love them anyway.

    As far as getting dinged up, nah. Just take care of them, always clean them once you are done, and get club covers. Beyond that, don't throw your clubs either, not only is it distasteful, but if you do it with a forged and it hits a rock...:(
  10. mr3856a

    mr3856a Well-Known Member

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    Is making a transmission like making a golf club? :)

    Essentially you're agreeing with me that one is softer than the other, which is true. I can't give you an anatomical or metallurgical reason as to why perhaps, but was I right? Yes.

    Furthermore, why don't they regularly cast soft metals? Why don't they forge hard metals?

    Hmmm, maybe it's not all as similar as you say.

    Anyhow, the proof is in the pudding. Ask anyone who plays forged irons if the feel of a cast iron is even remotely close. My guess would be if you had most people who regularly play cast clubs to hit a forged one, they would tell you the feel is awful - they don't regularly hit the sweet spot.

    To a good ballstriker, the difference between forged and cast is night and day. Performance of the two is a whole other issue as well, but I won't get into that.
  11. ualtim

    ualtim Orlando, FL

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    To me. there is definitely a feel difference. Some of the newer castings in softer steel such as 304 steel are bridging the gap. GS's new P2 line claims that they have a 431-1 steel that feels even softer.

    Performance wise, its hard to judge as most companies only produce a particular style of club head in either forged or cast. You can not compare a single clubhead created in both cast and forged. To me, the Mizuno MP-60's are like buttah! While I do not think that they would feel and perform the same if they were cast, there is no way to find out as they are all grain flow forged.

    My current set is cast out of the softer 304 steel, and they definitely feel softer than some of my 431 steel offerings but not as soft as the MP-60's or even my vintage Wilson FG-17's. Its kind of like the Scotty Cameron debate; to me, Scotties feel better than cast putters but some do not feel or detect a difference. If you can not feel a difference, is it worth the added expense?

    Cast clubs have their advantages, though. It is not easy to create some of the modern club head designs through the forging process nor is it as cost effective as casting the same design. Like all decisions on club purchases, its going to to come down to what the end user decides is important and how much it costs. Unless, of course, your just a ST Ho who is going to try and buy all of them. :D
  12. warbirdlover

    warbirdlover Ender of all threads Supporting Member

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    Same metals are used in transmissions as golf clubs (irons)

    They do regularly cast soft metals and they forge harder metals

    All the Ping and Cleveland players on tour play cast clubs.

    Cast or forge is not the issue. Club design is.

    Your Cleveland wedges are cast out of soft 8620 steel

    Everyone has their preference between the two. I get all the "feel" I need out of my Pings.

    :laugh:
  13. JEFF4i

    JEFF4i She lives! Supporting Member

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    I will say, being a huge fan of i3s and long time liker of Ping irons, they do feel great.

    Having Pings is like going to a prostitute. You lose your integrity but it still feels good.
  14. mr3856a

    mr3856a Well-Known Member

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    Iron head covers? :shocked:

    :D
  15. JEFF4i

    JEFF4i She lives! Supporting Member

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    Definately! Take care of your equipment and it will take care of you.
  16. ualtim

    ualtim Orlando, FL

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    So, are you saying that WBL has no integrity? :D (probably cheaper going to the real pro ho than becoming a Ping Ho, though :laugh: )
  17. mr3856a

    mr3856a Well-Known Member

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    It would seem that the material is the difference, then, and I don't know of too many cast blades made of hard steel nor many forged cavity backs made of out soft steel (save for Mizuno).

    Point is, as I said, cast irons are typically harder and have less feel.

    And yes, molecules are closer together in softer metals. :thumbs up:
  18. Sandy

    Sandy New Member

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    I'd say the same thing if I had paid an extra $300 for a set of clubs too!

    Just like the round where I had my lowest ever score and used $24 a dozen balls was nowhere near as good a round as the identical score one I just hit using Nike Platinums... ;)
  19. warbirdlover

    warbirdlover Ender of all threads Supporting Member

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    There are pros using cast cavity backs (and blades) out of 1020 steel. You can't say all cavity backs will feel harder. Depends on the club brand.

    No they're not closer together. Molecules(?) ATOMS are same spacing. This is called the material's "density". And if you "cast" an iron out of 1020 steel and "forge" an iron out of 1020 steel you can't possibly feel any difference because there is none. This is assuming the same iron shape and dimensions.

    Density of 1020 steel (common in forged blades), 4140 steel (high alloy used in forged blades sometimes) and 17-4 stainless steel (cast) is all 7.85 g/cc. Density is how close the atoms (molecules?) are to each other. It doesn't change. Fact. :laugh:
  20. dave.

    dave. Well-Known Member

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    I have played forged blades for 25 years and now play cast Pings.I can feel the difference,but....................its not enough to give up the increased foregiveness from the Pings.

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